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Stephen Hawking: “The Absence of Event Horizons Means There are No Black Holes"


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Stephen Hawking has set the world of physics back on its heels by reversing his lifetime’s work and a pillar of modern physics claiming that black holes do not exist – saying that the idea of an event horizon, the invisible boundary thought to shroud every black hole --the awesome gravitational pull created by the collapse of a star will be so strong that nothing can break free including light-- is flawed. Hawking proposes that instead of an inescapable event horizon, we should think of an “apparent horizon”.

“The absence of event horizons means that there are no black holes — in the sense of regimes from which light can't escape to infinity.” “There is no escape from a black hole in classical theory. [But quantum theory] enables energy and information to escape from a black hole," Hawking told Nature. His revised theory allows matter and energy to be held for a period of time before being released back into space.

Hawking says that his revsion requires a new theory that merges gravity with the other fundamental forces of nature. “The correct treatment remains a mystery,” he observed.

Hawking posted his paper, 'Information preservation and weather forecasting for black holes', on the arXiv preprint server. It has yet to pass peer review. The paper was based on a talk he gave via Skype at a meeting at the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics in Santa Barbara, California, in August 2013. leading theoretical physicist Joseph Polchinski of the Kavli Institute to comment that “In Einstein’s gravity, the black-hole horizon is not so different from any other part of space. We never see space-time fluctuate in our own neighbourhood: it is just too rare on large scales.”

Raphael Bousso, a theoretical physicist at the University of California, Berkeley, and former student of Hawking's, observes via, that “The idea that there are no points from which you cannot escape a black hole is in some ways an even more radical and problematic suggestion than the existence of firewalls. But the fact that we’re still discussing such questions 40 years after Hawking’s first papers on black holes and information is testament to their enormous significance."

Hawking's revised theory is an attempt to solve what is known as the black-hole firewall paradox, which has been vexing physicists for almost two years, after it In a thought experiment discovered by theoretical physicist Joseph Polchinski of the Kavli Institute and his colleagues, who asked what would happen to an astronaut unlucky enough to fall into a black hole.

The notion of a firewall obeyed quantum rules, but flouts Einstein’s general theory of relativity. According to that theory, observes, "someone in free fall should perceive the laws of physics as being identical everywhere in the Universe — whether they are falling into a black hole or floating in empty intergalactic space. As far as Einstein is concerned, the event horizon should be an unremarkable place."

Hawking proposes a third option in which quantum mechanics and general relativity remain intact, but quantum effects around the black hole cause space-time to fluctuate too wildly for a sharp boundary surface to exist.

The image at the top of the page of NGC 6240 contains new X-ray data from Chandra (shown in red, orange, and yellow) that has been combined with an optical image from the Hubble Space Telescope. In 2002, the discovery of two merging black holes was announced based on Chandra data in this galaxy. The two black holes are a mere 3,000 light years apart and are seen as the bright point-like sources in the middle of the image.

Scientists think these black holes are in such close proximity because they are in the midst of spiraling toward each other -- a process that began about 30 million years ago. It is estimated that the two black holes will eventually drift together and merge into a larger black hole some tens or hundreds of millions of years from now.

The formation of multiple systems of supermassive black holes should be common in the Universe, since many galaxies undergo collisions and mergers with other galaxies, most of which contain supermassive black holes. It is thought that pairs of massive black holes can explain some of the unusual behavior seen by rapidly growing supermassive black holes, such as the distortion and bending seen in the powerful jets they produce. Also, pairs of massive black holes in the process of merging are expected to be the most powerful sources of gravitational waves in the Universe.

Sources: Nature doi:10.1038/nature.2014.14583 and Hawking, S. W. Preprint at (2014) (2014)

The Daily Galaxy via  Express  and Nature





My thoughts about these super massive black holes is as follows. If the Universe is expanding, wouldn't the presences of these massive black holes begin to make the Universe close in on itself eventually?

I am delighted to hear that Professor Stephen Hawking retracted on his idea of event horizon!
In his position, as a renown physicist, he can lead the way to the Electric Universe.
And finally let the public know that gravity is not main force that governs the Universe.
Chapeau to Prof. Hawking.

The absence of valid coordinates or alternatively the self-contradiction of the non-Euclidean geometry is what means there are no black holes.

I think these black holes in fact are while holes which do exactly reverse than attracting everything inside and create the universe by releasing matter and everything else in the universe.

Think about magnetic fields so strong that all molecular matter cannot escape the polarizing forces involved. Picture standing still in space, without any velocity, then imagine all molecular matter moving around you at hyper- velocities in every direction. Imagine traveling at 50 thousand miles per hour while spinning around at 1000 mph, while orbiting a star that is traveling at 100,000 mph in a galaxy that is moving at 250,000 mph, going nowhere.Electricity is the ultimate power. Fuel your centrifugal engines with electrons, now or later. Think and dream. The universe awaits you.

All you non mainstream thinkers with alternative theories sound so corny and hippie. Why don't you act straight, write a paper and send it in for review. These comments to real scientists that does thinking of science for a living, is just silly.

Although I do agree that the electric universe theory is interesting. Read a book or two about it.

But please, skip the "universe awaits you"-shit.

The Universe may be queerer than we can possibly imagine.

Stephen Hawking has finally accepted that there are serious problems with both Newton's Gravitational Theory & Einstein's General Theory of Relativity as revealed by experiments. Read
This was predicted in 'Foundation of Theory of Everything: Non-living Things & Living Things' (Revised version on World Science Database, General Science Journal, Vixra and in my profile or at There is a standing open challenge to the adopted paradigm of physics which could be seen at

Thank you, Johnny, I just startrekking with spock on a five year mission.

Wow! Surprising signs of integrity returning to cosmology!

Thanks, Stephen Hawking, for lending renewed sanity to our best bet for grounded understanding of what matters in this physical universe.

Electrifying in its implications and energizing to our rarest of commodities.

Real hope for human understanding existential truth.

A suggestion. It is known that solar systems are created by the stars -celestial bodies with big mass-, around them are collated in rotational orbits the planets. This movement creates usually spherical mass concentrations. But Galaxies, in their basic form, are not spherical concentrations but they consists disc concentrations. This means that galaxies have different manner of formation than the solar systems. If galaxies had at their centers high concentration of masses -the black holes-, they should will have spherical and not disc or elliptical form. After the above I do the suggestion that at the center of the galaxies there is nothing and that the dynamics of their development follows rather a dynamics of the turbulence motion.
Further information I give to the theory of «pointal charges», described in the book «From the inside of quarks and up to beyond the Universe». At the same time I have collected, many other data confirm this suggestion. These data, I have available to anyone interested for this issue.

In response to Lyle L. Bell question:

A suprmassive black hole only holds the mass of the objects it has "obsorbed" into itself, the supermassive black hole does not act like a vaccum but as mass alone. For instance, if were to replace our sun with a black hole of the same mass as the sun, then nothing would change. We would still orbit around the black hole as we do our sun. The universe is just mass orbiting mass, orbiting mass.

In the center of our galaxy is a supermassive black hole. The prescence of it does not mean we will be "sucked" into it, nor does it have enough mass to accumulate more mass. Our star system orbits around the supermassive black hole, but there is far much greater mass between us and the supermassive black hole, that the supermassive black hole does not faze our star system.

Where I am heading at: Our univeres is somehwere along the lines of 5-6 percent of visible matter, and around 10 percent dark matter (matter that does not react with normal matter, and does not emmit or reflect light, and usually found on the outskirts of a galaxy and makes up most of it's mass.)The other 85 percent that makes up the universe consists of dark energy. This energy is counteracting with gravity much more than gravity's strength. This is what's causing our universe to expand (the space between large objects) and that number is growing rapidly and at one point in the univese, objects will be spread so far apart from each other, that the universe will be dark, cold, and lonely...

No Theory Of Everything yet. a Black Hole can rip a star apart in pieces, and all the pieces are exploding in the process of falling into the huge atractor (giving extraordinary lights and radiation), while an astronaut falling there too, just watches everything on the window of his spaceship and writes poems...

Consider this which I thought up about twenty years ago. The universe is made up of the simplest things, space and time. Let me throw in a very simple albeit almost insultingly basic picture. Suppose the entire U is made of space bits and time bits in a three dimensional array somewhat like a crystal lattice, for every time bit there is a space bit in a 3d lattice. Perturbations in this 3d grid/lattice are the building blocks of "mass" themselves, making space/time the single component of everything from energies to matter. These perturbations or ultimate building blocks are the "substance" of what makes up the energy packets which make up quarks and other basic building blocks. This does support E=mc2. So if this is correct, we and everything else are only essentially the result of nano perturbations in the space/time lattice. A perturbation means a discontinuity in the space bit ratio to the ratio of time bits. Time has been proven not to be an "even flow" but in increments. This somewhat supports what I'm saying that the U is made of space/time bits in a lattice. Now if you can somehow create a "bow wave" in the space/time lattice, and use less time bits than space bits to "move" through the lattice, then you can therefore "go" faster than C (light speed). You haven't "gone" but you have used less time bits than space bits and c is not violated. There now, faster than c velocity. We seem to want to complex things rather than to "think" like a universe which has to be made of the simplest components, ultimately. I don't have space here to discuss what energies are.

A black hole is still a singularity wherein relativity reaches its ultimate meaning - time stands still, all time paths are present in each black hole and thus each black hole leads to all others in all other ‘regions’ of the universe. Hawking’s new theory of the event-horizon (there is none) makes sense to me as it was not clear why there should be a sharp boundary when fluctuations seem the natural order of things thus creating fuzzy regions of transition. Black holes might also unequally distribute gravitons - in keeping with the conservation principle, anti gravitons are emitted while gravitons are embiebed to be emitted at some far destination. This would mean each universe would (cyclically) transition from being dominated by gravitons to anti-gravitons (‘dark’, repulsive energy) or ‘light’ (attractive, gravitational) energy. Our universe is far along the way towards losing the rest of its ‘light’ energy, regular gravity, and eventually will fly apart. But don’t cry for the Grand Universe ensemble, the overall balance of dark energy and light energy universes will be maintained, always. It’s just that such a balance is dynamic on a universe time scale.

The imbedded comment, "It has yet to pass peer review..." smacks of hubris in the first degree. Who among our living physicists, mathematicians and cosmologists is Stephen's peer? Only he is his peer, and this paper shows he peer reviewed his original thesis and pronounced it wanting. Consider this equation: IQ plus curiosity plus education minus ego equal peerless science (and wonder).

Cool, I always knew there are way more to black holes than "meets the eye". Hopefully we are finally taking our understanding of them in the right direction! Believe it or not but these astronomical objects actually serve immense purpose!

Just to respond to Lyle L. Bell's very good question above:

It's probably best not to think of blackholes as some type of magical super-sucking device, or "vacuum cleaner".

Instead, at a distance, there is actually nothing special, magical, or different about the gravitational forces of a blackhole.

Think of it this way:

If the sun suddenly turned into a blackhole, our planet Earth would simply keep orbiting the blackhole-sun forever and ever. The blackhole-sun would not magically consume the solar system, nor would it "suck up" all the planets in our solar system, nor would it cause our solar system's planets to come racing into it.

Just like any other object in the universe, the gravitational effects of a black hole drop sharply, the further you are away from the black hole.

This means that blackholes (even super-blackholes) don't have sufficient gravity power to cause the entire universe to contract upon itself in a big crunch.

So again: you could actually put an object into orbit around a super blackhole at the right distance, and that object would simply happily orbit the black hole, forever and ever, and not get sucked in.

In fact, you are currently in orbit around a superblack hole right now: the one at the center of our milky-way galaxy.

Yes, on the hand it is true: if you get very close to a black hole, then it will have strong gravity that you could never escape.

But again, on the otherhand, there is nothing special about that gravity at a distance, and it won't magically suck up distant objects.

"Only he is his peer, and this paper shows he peer reviewed his original thesis and pronounced it wanting."

Science has no place for idol worship. He's not infallible. In fact, let's put this another way: he figured out he was wrong.

This just shows how little we know about the universe and everything we know is just a theory.

This almost sounds like a cover up for all the scientists that said nothing can escape a black hole once gravitationally attracted by it. Personally, on querying scientists about the now known issue of high energy jets overcoming the gravitational pull of a black hole, I had it refined to and accurately explained that nothing could escape once it crossed the event horizon. ¿Is the whole thing being swept under the carpet? ¿Are some scientists afraid to admit that they were wrong? No one is perfect but hey, admit to it, it doesn't hurt

As regards the comments on peer review, I would point out that peer review is not the arbiter of whether a theory is correct or not. It merely means that the paper has no obvious errors in either the math or its basic premises. Posting to arXiv provides the opportunity for the ultimate peer review, as now the entire physics community can measure its worth. If I read this article correctly this extends his hypothesis of black hole evaporation in such a manner as to rework the entire concept of what a black hole actually is.

-- James Ph. Kotsybar

thinks God,
”that My weakest force
ironically becomes the strongest.
The meek shall inherit, over due course –
the last become first, the shortest, longest.

“So gravity, most obvious, shall be
the greatest ever unsolved mystery
which, though its effects everyone can see,
can’t be described satisfactorily –
a force that’s both uniform and mundane,
predictable yet able to allude
a simple explanation that sounds sane
of its ever attractive attitude.

“And action at a distance? Let men try
to come to terms with what they most deny.”

Isn't there something basically non-descriptive, even distorting now, in continued use of the term 'black hole'?

In terms of 3D form does this new hypothesis not suggest something much more akin to orb than hole?

Perhaps, as suggested by the idea of a holographic universe, all information of material composition of these objects is superficially condensed on the surface as bits, much more bubble than hole.

And, can't we anticipate gravity as dynamic effect of electromagnetic force permeating our universe, basic to all observable structure? Indeed, coming to terms with most fundamentally connecting forces seems oddly repulsive to human ability.

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